Into Film Young Reviewer, Cai, Reviews Showdown

Into Film Young Reviewer, Cai attends the premiere of Showdown at Cinema & Co., Swansea and lets us know his thoughts.

Cai says – ‘Showdown tells the story of Sam, a young autistic boy, with a passion for Western films, who must decide whether to stand down or stay his ground when a showdown presents itself. To demonstrate the main character’s autism, the sound is used perfectly and practically to signal when Sam is experiencing sensory overload, with the shaky camera adding to this depiction of his autism. The camera is also used well by the filmmakers to emphasise Sam’s isolation through far away wide shots that distance him from the viewer. I was impressed by the way in which the film uses a handheld camera, adding to the film’s sense of realism.  The film’s close-up shots aid in immersing the audience in the story of the film by giving us the best view of the subtleties of the actors’ performances. 

The film’s focus on an autistic character is a refreshing perspective that is brought to life by the young actor, Charlie Lock. His performance is incredible, he captures an autistic character through no dialogue, relying only on facial expressions. Another performance that shines is Sam’s Dad, who captures the parental perspective on autism; ranging from frustration to acceptance. These performances enhance the sweet story, that appeals to both young and older audiences. Younger audiences can connect with Sam’s perspective, whilst older audiences will connect with Sam’s parents.

Showdown is set in the small Welsh town of Bedlinog, a setting which perfectly demonstrates the idyllic aspect of the Welsh countryside. I also love the emotionally raw aspect of the story, as the town is very close to the writer’s heart, having grown up there. Bedlinog also fits the film’s western colour palette and aids in enhancing the film’s western iconography.

One of my favourite aspects of the film was it’s ‘proud to be indie’ feel, it all felt very homegrown. My only critique of Showdown was the pace of the editing which really makes the film go by all too fast leaving me desiring more.’

To find out more about the film and how to book, click here.
Find out more about the Into Film Young Reporter Programme.